Census of the Petrarch Manuscripts in the United States


M. 502

Parch., ff. I (contemp. parch.) + I (modern tissue paper) + 65, modern foliation, 302 × 228 (178-190 × 155) mm., 32-33 long lines, two verses per line, 18 (center bifolium is missing) 2-610 78 (last folio is a pastedown), plain horizontal catchwords, ruled in lead, written by one person, a round gothic script. A full border decoration on f. 1, formed of two patterned (quadrilobe figures in triangles) gold ribbons, increased to four on the bottom margin, multi-colored acanthus leaves, and gold disks ending in single gold thorns trail along the outside of the patterned ribbon occasionally piercing through it; seven medallions are superimposed over the ribbon (over erased grounds), the upper inside corner contains a medallion inhabited by a green laurel tree, in the center top is Cupid with bow and a dish of fruit, a profile of a woman (Laura?) with folded arms is in the upper outside corner; the combined letters LB appear in both the inside and outside center margins on blue grounds, a chained wolf in the inner bottom; a bow is formed of the patterned ribbons in the outside bottom corner surmonted by a crown, and in the center bottom the ribbon forms a multi-lobed cornice around the arms; along the lower margin facing the arms are two fanciful collared leopards and two griffons; f. 1, a 6ߚline pink and gray initial ending in acanthus on a rectangular gold ground outlined in black, inhabited by Petrarch at his writing table, bookshelf in the background; each poem begins with an alternating red or blue 2ߚline initial with rose and red infilling respectively, harping and pen flourishes; f. 45, a space has been left blank for a 9ߚline initial for Canzone 264; f. 63v, the 2ߚline initial of Canzone 366 is elaborately decorated in red pen, extending well into the margin; the stanzas of the canzoni have alternating red and blue paragraph marks; on ff. 1-21, the versals are slashed in red. Bound in 15thߚcent. brown calf over wooden boards, plain blind stamp tooling which forms two thin border lines, on the spine is the leather label with "Petrarca. Canzoniere. XIV Cent. Italian", remains of four clasps, binding repaired by Duprez-Lahey. ff. 1-64v, Petrarch, Rerum vulg. fragm. , title "Francisci Petrarce laureati poete rerum vulgarium fragmenta incipiunt. Rubrica", inc. "Voi ch’ascoltate in rime sparse il suono ...", (nos. 1-22, 23, vv. 1-128, 28, vv. 36-58, 30-120, f. 21v, "Donna mi vene spesso ne la mente", 122-129, 121, 130-263, f. 44v, "Francisci Petrarce poete laureati, de dilecte Laure sue vita, quam vigintiuno annis laudando decantavit, liber primus vulgarium carminum explicit. Deo gratis amen"; f. 45, "Rerum vulgarium laureati poete Francisci Petrarce liber secundus de recessu a vita presenti amate sue Laure incipit. Rubrica", nos. 264-339, 342, 340, 350, 355, 341, 343, 356, 344-349, 357-365, 351, 352, 354, 353, 366), expl. "... Che colga ’l mio spirito ultimo in pace".
f. 65rv, blank.
2nd. f.: Quando
Written and illuminated in Lombardy , s. XIV-XV. The manuscript is said by Ullman (no. 69), Harrsen and Boyce1 to have belonged to Galeazzo II Visconti (dead 1378); the original arms on f. 1 have been effaced, although an initial G and two supporting leopards remain. The leopards collared in red may have been the personal emblem of Galeazzo II’s son Gian Galeazzo Visconti (dead 1402).2
The manuscript was believed wrongly to have belonged to Ludovico Barbo (1382-1443), Abbot of Santa Giustina in Padova and later Bishop of Treviso;3 the initials LB appear in two roundels on f. 1. The effaced arms on the bottom of f. 1 are surmounted by two angels holding a drape and a woman holding a cornucopia of flowers and a banner inscribed with the letters FPV, perhaps for "Francisci Petrarcae Vatis"; on f. 64v, over an erased colophon and written in a humanistic script, is the ownership note of Bernardino Barbo (ca. 1477), the son of Francesco di Pietro Barbo, in which Bernardino states that he purchased the manuscript with his own money, "Petrarcei carminis dulcedine captus Bernardinus Barbus Francisci Petri filius musarum emulator, volumen hoc, divorum auribus non indignum, sibi posterisque et optimorum tantum amicorum gratuito usui, peculiari sumptu studuit comparandum: ne computetur in assem"; owned by Giovanni Hellman of Venice who donated the manuscript in the mid-18th century to Emilio de Tipaldo of Venice;4 A. Firmin-Didot, Catalogue des livres préciex ... de la Bibliothèque de m. Ambroise Firmin-Didot (Paris, 1881), 61-63; an old library number appears on f. 65, " G. 4 "; purchased by the Pierpont Morgan Library from L. S. Olschki in 1912.
Ullman, no. 69; De Ricci, p. 1462, no. 502; Wilkins, no. 26; Jasenas, p. 24, no. 2, pl. 2 (of. f. 1).

1. M. Harrsen and G. K. Boyce, Italian Manuscripts in the Pierpont Morgan Library (New York, 1953), p. 42, no. 23.
2. E. Pellegrin, Bibliothèque des Visconti et des Sforza ducs de Milan, Supplément (Florence-Paris, 1969), 42-43.
3. Cfr. L. Gargan, "Libri e biblioteche a Treviso al tempo di Ludovico Barbo", in Riforma della Chiesa, cultura e spiritualità nel Quattrocento veneto ... (Cesena, 1984), 414-15.
4. E. A. Cicogna, Delle inscrizioni veneziane, VI (Venezia, 1853), 109; see also G. M. Malvezzi, "Codice petrarchesco posseduto dal nobile commendatore Emilio de Tipaldo", in Petrarca e Venezia (Venezia, 1874), 177-86.

De Ricci
De Ricci, S. Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada. 3 vols. New York, 1935-40.
Jasenas, M. Petrarch in America: A Survey of Petrarch Manuscripts. New York and Washington, D. C., 1974.
Ullman, B. L. Petrarch Manuscripts in the United States (Censimento dei codici petrarcheschi, no. 1). Padova, 1964 (also in Italia medioevale e umanistica, v [1962], 443-475).
Wilkins, E.H. "Manuscripts of the Canzoniere and the Triumphs in American Libraries", Modern Philology, XLV (1947), 23-35 (updated in Wilkins, E.H. The Making of the "Canzoniere" and Other Petrarchan Studies. Roma, 1951.

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